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Prof. Joselito Guianan Chan's The Labor Code of the Philippines, Annotated Labor Standards & Social Legislation Volume I of a 3-Volume Series 2019 Edition (3rd Revised Edition)
 

 
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UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

 
PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

   
January-1958 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. Nos. L-9456 & L-9481 January 6, 1958 - THE COLLECTOR OF INTERNAL REVENUE v. DOMINGO DE LARA

    102 Phil 813

  • G.R. No. L-9692 January 6, 1958 - COLLECTOR OF INTERNAL REVENUE v. BATANGAS TRANSPORTATION COMPANY

    102 Phil 822

  • G.R. Nos. L-8845-46 January 7, 1958 - BATANGAS TRANSPORTATION COMPANY v. MARTIN SOUZA

    102 Phil 835

  • G.R. No. L-10202 January 8, 1958 - IN RE: SY CHHUT alias TAN BING TIONG v. REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL.

    102 Phil 839

  • G.R. No. L-10420 January 10, 1958 - IN RE: LIM KIM So alias FRANCISCO LIM KIM SO v. REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL.

    102 Phil 843

  • G.R. Nos. L-10249-60 January 14, 1958 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RUFINO CRISOSTOMO

    102 Phil 846

  • G.R. No. L-10285 January 14, 1958 - SAMPAGUITA SHOE v. COMMISSIONER OF CUSTOMS

    102 Phil 850

  • G.R. No. L-10423 January 21, 1958 - AMADO P. JALANDONI v. ANGELA MARTIR-GUANZON

    102 Phil 859

  • G.R. No. L-11000 January 21, 1958 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALICIA RAPIRAP

    102 Phil 863

  • G.R. No. L-11014 January 21, 1958 - VICTORIANA ESPIRITU v. THE MUNICIPAL COUNCIL

    102 Phil 866

  • G.R. No. L-10196 January 22, 1958 - SANTOS LUMBER COMPANY v. CITY OF CEBU

    102 Phil 870

  • G.R. No. L-10776 January 23, 1958 - MELITON HERRERA v. THE AUDITOR GENERAL OF THE REP. OF THE PHIL.

    102 Phil 875

  • G.R. No. L-10922 January 23, 1958 - GREGORIO P. DE GUZMAN v. JOSE B. RAMOSO

    102 Phil 883

  • G.R. No. L-12294 January 23, 1958 - UNITED PEPSI-COLA SALES ORGANIZATION (PAFLU) v. HON. ANTONIO CA‘IZARES

    102 Phil 887

  • G.R. No. L-10234 January 24, 1958 - IN RE: Victoriano Yap Subieng to be admitted a citizen of the Phil.; VICTORIANO YAP SUBIENG v. REP. OF THE PHIL.

    102 Phil 892

  • G.R. No. L-9689 January 27, 1958 - JESUS T. QUIAMBAO v. PEDRO R. PERALTA

    102 Phil 899

  • G.R. No. L-10806 January 27, 1958 - DAVID AZNAR v. ASUNCION SUCILLA

    102 Phil 902

  • G.R. No. L-11093 January 27, 1958 - LEONARDO ENAGE LABAJO v. CIRIACO ENRIQUEZ

    102 Phil 907

  • G.R. No. L-10446 January 28, 1958 - COLLEGE OF ORAL & DENTAL SURGERY v. COURT OF TAX APPEALS

    102 Phil 912

  • G.R. No. L-10874 January 28, 1958 - RUFINO D. ANDRES v. THE CROWN LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY

    102 Phil 919

  • G.R. No. L-10702 January 29, 1958 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. SIXTO CABARLES

    102 Phil 926

  • G.R. No. L-10091 January 29, 1958 - BOY SCOUTS OF THE PHIL. v. JULIANA V. ARAOS

    102 Phil 1080

  • G.R. No. L-11343 January 29, 1958 - CARLOS LEDESMA v. COURT OF TAX APPEALS

    102 Phil 931

  • G.R. No. L-11248 January 30, 1958 - ANACLETA VILLAROMAN v. QUIRINO STA. MARIA

    102 Phil 937

  • Adm. Case No. 195 January 31, 1958 - IN RE: Attorney JESUS T. QUIAMBAO

    102 Phil 940

  • G.R. No. L-8252 January 31, 1958 - JOSE C. ZULUETA v. NICANOR NICOLAS

    102 Phil 944

  • G.R. No. L-9871 January 31, 1958 - ATKINS v. B. CUA HIAN TEK

    102 Phil 948

  • G.R. No. L-9928 January 31, 1958 - REP. OF THE PHIL. v. THE COURT OF APPEALS

    102 Phil 953

  • G.R. No. L-10022 January 31, 1958 - NORTHERN MOTORS v. NATIONAL LABOR UNION

    102 Phil 958

  • G.R. No. L-10141 January 31, 1958 - REP. OF THE PHIL. v. PHILIPPINE RESOURCES DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION

    102 Phil 960

  • G.R. Nos. L-10236-48 January 31, 1958 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EUSTACIO DE LUNA

    102 Phil 968

  • G.R. No. L-10370 January 31, 1958 - THE COLLECTOR OF INTERNAL REVENUE v. MATIAS H. AZNAR

    102 Phil 979

  • G.R. No. L-10547 January 31, 1958 - THE PHIL. GUARANTY CO. v. LAURA DINIO

    102 Phil 991

  • G.R. No. L-10691 January 31, 1958 - ERLINDA STERNBERG v. GONZALO SOLOMON

    102 Phil 995

  • G.R. No. L-10747 January 31, 1958 - MARIANO DIAZ v. PASCUAL MACALINAO

    102 Phil 999

  • G.R. No. L-10902 January 31, 1958 - FLORIDA LAGMAY v. EMERENCIANA QUINIT

    102 Phil 1003

  • G.R. No. L-11024 January 31, 1958 - ALFONSO ANGELES v. THE COURT OF APPEALS, GREOGORIO STA. INES

    102 Phil 1006

  • G.R. No. L-11186 January 31, 1958 - ALFONSO CABABA v. PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION

    102 Phil 1013

  • G.R. No. L-11395 January 31, 1958 - SOTERA GARCIA DIMAGIBA v. HON. AMBROSIO M. GERALDEZ

    102 Phil 1016

  • G.R. No. L-11647 January 31, 1958 - FLORENTINO NAVARRO v. HON. ELOY BELLO

    102 Phil 1019

  • G.R. No. L-12724 January 31, 1958 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CARIDAD CAPISTRANO

    102 Phil 1025

  •  





     
     

    G.R. No. L-8252 January 31, 1958 - JOSE C. ZULUETA v. NICANOR NICOLAS<br /><br />102 Phil 944

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    EN BANC

    [G.R. No. L-8252. January 31, 1958.]

    JOSE C. ZULUETA, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. NICANOR NICOLAS in his capacity as Provincial Fiscal of Rizal, Defendant-Appellee.

    A. R. Teodoro for Appellant.

    Lorenzo Sumulong and Antonio C. Masaquel for Appellee.


    SYLLABUS


    1. PUBLIC OFFICERS; REFUSAL TO PERFORM OFFICIAL DUTY WITHOUT JUST CAUSE; DUTY OF THE FISCAL TO PROSECUTE OR NOT, CRIMES. — The refusal of the fiscal to prosecute when after an investigation he finds no sufficient evidence to establish a prima facie case is not a refusal, without just cause, to perform an official duty. The fiscal has sure the legal duty to prosecute crimes where there is enough evidence to justify such action. But it is equally his duty not to prosecute when after an investigation he has become convinced that the evidence available is not enough to establish a prima facie case.

    2. ID.; ID.; ID.; AUTHORITY OF FISCAL TO DETERMINE WHETHER A "PRIMA FACIE" CASE EXISTS. — The fiscal is not bound to accept the opinion of the complainant in a criminal case as to whether or not a prima facie case exists. Vested with authority and discretion to determine whether there insufficient evidence to justify of the corresponding information, and having control of the prosecution of a criminal case, the fiscal cannot be subjected to dictation from the offended party.

    3. ID.; ID.; ID.; ID.; LIABILITY FOR RESULTING INJURIES. — As a general rule, a public prosecutor, being a quasi-judicial officer empowered to exercise discretion or judgment, is not personally liable for resulting injuries when acting within the scope of his authority, and in the line of his official duty (42 Am. Jur., sec. 21, p. 256)


    D E C I S I O N


    REYES, A., J.:


    This is an appeal taken by plaintiff from a decision of the Court of First Instance of Manila, dismissing his complaint for damages on the ground of lack of cause of action.

    Plaintiff instituted the present action on May 19, 1954 against the defendant provincial fiscal of Rizal to recover moral and pecuniary damages in the sum of P10,000. The complaint in substance alleges that on May 6, 1954, the defendant fiscal conducted an investigation of a complaint for libel filed by herein plaintiff against the provincial governor of Rizal and the staff members of the Philippine Free Press; that after said investigation the fiscal "rendered an opinion" that there was no prima facie case; that the alleged libelous statements were made in good faith and for the sole purpose of serving the best interests of the public; and that in consequence the fiscal absolved the said governor and the Free Press staff from the crime of libel.

    The only question for determination is whether plaintiff’s complaint states a cause of action.

    The present action is based on article 27 of the new Civil Code, which provides that "any person suffering material or moral loss because a public servant or employee refuses or neglects without just cause, to perform his official duty may file an action for damages and other relief against the latter." But as we said in Bagalay v. Ursal, * 50 Off. Gaz. 4231, this article "contemplates a refusal or neglect without just cause by a public servant or employee to perform his official duty." Refusal of the fiscal to prosecute when after an investigation he finds no sufficient evidence to establish a prima facie case is not a refusal, without just cause, to perform an official duty. The fiscal has for sure the legal duty to prosecute crimes where there is enough evidence to justify such action. But it is equally his duty not to prosecute when after an investigation he has become convinced that the evidence available is not enough to establish a prima facie case. The fiscal is not bound to accept the opinion of the complainant in a criminal case as to whether or not a prima facie case exists. Vested with authority and discretion to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to justify the filing of the corresponding information and, having control of the prosecution of a criminal case, the fiscal cannot be subjected to dictation from the offended party (People v. Liggayu, Et Al., 97 Phil., 865, 51 Off. Gaz., 5644; People v. Natoza, 100 Phil., 533, 53 Off. Gaz., 8099). Having legal cause to refrain from filing an information against the persons whom the herein plaintiff wants him to charge with libel, the defendant fiscal cannot be said to have refused or neglected without just cause to perform his official duty. On the contrary, it would appear that he performed it.

    A contrary rule would be fraught with danger. Says the learned trial Judge on this point:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph

    "Es altamente peligroso senter un precedente judicial haciendo responsable por daños al Fiscal Provincial de Rizal, aqui demandado, por rehusar este de presentar querella si racionalmente y de buene fe, dicho Fiscal es o era de opinion en el ejercicio de su sana discrecion de que no existian motivos para presentar una querella; de sentar este peligroso procedimiento o precedente judicial contra los fiscales seria poner a estos en una situacion que en el cumplimento de su obligacion y en el ejercicio de su sana discrecion estuviesen siempre amenazados de una demanda civil si su opinion fuese contraria a la del denunciante, como una espada de Damocles pendiente en todo tiempo sobre sus cabezas. Si el denunciante en aquel asunto criminal de libelo, demandante en la presente causa, no estuviere conforme con la opinion o conclusion a que ha llegado el Fiscal Provincial de Rizal, demandado en esta causa, opinion o conclusion hecha con entera buena fe y en al ejercicio sano de sus facultades discrecionales, todavia queda al demandante otros recursos que nuestras leyes proveen para la proteccion o ejercicio de sus derechos."cralaw virtua1aw library

    It may not be amiss to state here that, as a general rule, a public prosecutor, being a quasi-judicial officer empowered to exercise discretion or judgment, is not personally liable for resulting injuries when acting within the scope of his authority, and in the line of his official duty. (42 Am. Jur. sec. 21 p. 256). As was said in the case of Mendoza v. De Leon (33 Phil. 508, 513) —

    "Nor are officers or agents of the Government charged with the performance of governmental duties which are in their nature legislative, or quasi judicial, liable for the consequences of their official acts, unless it be shown that they act willfully and maliciously, and with the express purpose of inflicting injury upon the plaintiff."cralaw virtua1aw library

    In view of the foregoing, the decision appealed from is affirmed, with costs against the Appellant.

    Paras, G. J., Bengzon, Padilla, Montemayor, Bautista Angelo, Labrador Concepcion, Reyes, J. B. L., Endencia and Felix, JJ., concur.

    Endnotes:



    * 95 Phil., 473.

    G.R. No. L-8252 January 31, 1958 - JOSE C. ZULUETA v. NICANOR NICOLAS<br /><br />102 Phil 944


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